OECD Science and Technology Policy Ministerial


Mlungisi Cele

South Africa

Head of the National Advisory Council on Innovation (NACI)


I have studied, worked, and developed passion and interest and networks in science, technology and innovation, and higher education policy studies. I hold a PhD in Higher Education Studies and an MPhil in Science and Technology Studies. I worked as a researcher at the former University of Durban-Westville (now part of the University of KwaZulu Natal) and University of the Western Cape. Academic outputs include edited book entitled innovation policy at the intersection: global and local experiences” (2020). Also presented at local and international academic conferences. I am serving as a Chief Executive Officer of the National Advisory Council on Innovation (NACI), which is a statutory advisory body to the South African government on STI issues. I have made substantial contributions in the development of the 2023 New Strategic Management Model for STI; Decadal Plan for Science Technology, the 2030 National Foresight Exercise on STI; 2020 Monitoring and Evaluation Framework for the National System of Innovation (NSI) and reviews of the National Research and Development Strategy and Ten-Year Innovation Plan and the 1996 White Paper on Science and Technology. I am representative of South Africa in various STI multilateral forums (such as G20 Scientific Advisors, OECD, BRICS). I am a member of the Ministerial High-Level Panel on Higher Education Science and Innovation and WITS Council and Senate.